5 Tips for Developing a Social Media Strategy in 2021


The chaos of 2020 has largely been left behind, and now you need to strategize about the new year. Although 2020 was not a typical year, it provided us with some information that will help inform this year's decisions. Probably the greatest lesson was how the influence of social media has increased during the pandemic. Developing a social media strategy has changed as the audience has increased and, as always in business, you need to adapt or risk falling behind your competitors.

Social media marketing requires a new, more agile outlook to work effectively. The landscape of social media is ever shifting, and marketers must shift with current trends to stay relevant. But although the medium has changed, the questions that drive a marketing strategy have not.

For example… 

How you answer these questions will greatly influence how successful you’ll be.

Social media is the new marketing frontier. Half of the world's population is on social media, so you need to work on developing a social media strategy that gives you an advantage over your competitors. Social media can be used not just for marketing but for attracting new customers, creating brand awareness, and increasing sales. However, developing the right social media strategy can be tough without guidelines to help you navigate the waters.

Best Practices for Developing a Social Media Strategy in 2021

1) Use Social Media to Create Trust in Your Brand

hand holding mobile device displaying a social media post

Traditional marketing no longer works well. We have all grown up on traditional advertising, and YouTube is full of videos describing how advertising lies to you. When 75% of customers begin interacting with a marketing campaign believing it’s lying, how can you market your brand? 

The answer is by using social media to make the customer feel like they have a relationship with your brand. 

Maybe your brand always answers with wisecracks on Twitter, or maybe you thank anyone who tags you for their time. These gestures endear you to the customer and make them feel connected to your brand. Once consumers feel connected to you, it’s a lot easier to convince them you tell the truth. When you generate brand loyalty from your consumers, your marketing efforts no longer come across as sales but as advice.

2) Include User-Generated Content

Whether it’s blogs, reviews, recipes, or stories, consumers trust other consumers more than they trust you. It is not a mistake that Amazon includes so many reviews with every product they sell. The description is there to sit in the back of the customer's mind. In all likelihood, the customer barely reads the description because they know they can't trust it in the first place. The reviews; however, they trust. Reviews are poured over for each item, comparing different features that way rather than by the description. User-generated content is where you really start marketing because that's the copy the consumer believes.

3) Tell a Story About Your Brand

woman in exercise clothing on bridge using mobile device for storytelling

Social media Stories are a great way to make people feel connected to your brand. These are images and videos showing the inside truths of your company. For example, a typical day for Bill from shipping or 24 hours in the shoes of the CEO. These Stories not only tell a narrative about what is going on around them but also tell the consumer what your company stands for and what it believes. 

Consumers may assume that the company's advertising is false, but we are hardwired to believe narratives are true. Share a Stories post about your business, make people care about your employees and ethics, and then tell them how your product/service can help solve their problem. At that point, the consumer is invested instead of cynical.

4) Livestream Content Directly from Your Business

smiling man in kitchen livestreaming as he rolls dough

Live videos are the most-watched content on social media. Take this knowledge and use it to market your brand. Again, it’s all about making a connection with your customer. Make them feel like they're a fly on the wall in your company, and they know where you stand. 

Livestream a Q&A with a department manager or a busy meeting where people are brainstorming ideas. Anything so the consumer doesn't feel they are being marketed at but are being entertained. While they enjoy the strange sight of you livestreaming your meeting, you are also building a connection with them, making them trust you as they feel more a part of who you are.

5) Get Involved with Social Activity

Increasing studies show that consumers want their brands to stand for something even if it's not something in which they personally believe. A recent study showed that 56% of consumers did not trust a brand that was unwilling to take a firm stand on a social issue. Using social media to talk about your organization's charities that you support and the socially responsible actions your company takes informs the consumer about who you are. You want your customer to forget for a while that you are trying to sell them something with a campaign and get caught up in your social activism. The closer you can tie it to your product, the better. If you can tie your product to a societal need and help fill that need anytime that societal issue is mentioned, people will think of you.


The year 2021 will be an interesting one for marketing. For some, it will be a year to reset their brand associations. Others will double down and stand even more firmly on customer expectations. The only thing to be said absolutely is if your brand fails to be agile and flexible enough, it may be a disastrous year. So, review the tips above and get to work on developing a social media strategy that wins this year!

(Make sure you've covered your bases and are following social media best practices! Get our free Social Media Tool Kit here.)


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Filed Under: Social Media

About Lauren Zylyk

During her time working for Walt Disney World, Lauren quickly grew a social media presence on platforms, mainly through Instagram. With a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing paired with her passion for marketing, Lauren grew her audience even more by creating a blog and through use of other social media platforms. She loves the impact that social media has and how quickly it can get information around worldwide.
When she is not busy keeping up with the latest trends online, she can be found baking cookies in the kitchen, watching hockey, or at the gym. She loves hot yoga and trying out any new dessert recipe. She can’t cook, but she can sure bake!